Tag Archives: morocco

Archaeological Site of Volubilis

The Mauritanian capital, founded in the 3rd century B.C., became an important outpost of the Roman Empire and was graced with many fine buildings. Extensive remains of these survive in the archaeological site, located in a fertile agricultural area. Volubilis was later briefly to become the capital of Idris I, founder of the Idrisid dynasty, who is buried at nearby Moulay Idris.

Since 1997 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Patrik for the postcard.

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Medina of Marrakesh

Founded in 1070โ€“72 by the Almoravids, Marrakesh remained a political, economic and cultural centre for a long period. Its influence was felt throughout the western Muslim world, from North Africa to Andalusia. It has several impressive monuments dating from that period: the Koutoubiya Mosque, the Kasbah, the battlements, monumental doors, gardens, etc. Later architectural jewels include the Bandiรข Palace, the Ben Youssefย Madrasa, the Saadian Tombs, several great residences and Place Jamaรข El Fna, a veritable open-air theatre.

Since 1985 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Patrick for the postcard.

Medina of Essaouira (formerly Mogador)

Essaouira is an exceptional example of a late-18th-century fortified town, built according to the principles of contemporary European military architecture in a North African context. Since its foundation, it has been a major international trading seaport, linking Morocco and its Saharan hinterland with Europe and the rest of the world.

Since 2001 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Edgar for the postcard.

Medina of Fez

Founded in the 9th century and home to the oldest university in the world, Fez reached its height in the 13thโ€“14th centuries under the Marinids, when it replaced Marrakesh as the capital of the kingdom. The urban fabric and the principal monuments in the medina โ€“ย madrasas, fondouks, palaces, residences, mosques and fountains – date from this period. Although the political capital of Morocco was transferred to Rabat in 1912, Fez has retained its status as the country’s cultural and spiritual centre.

Since 1981 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Edgar for the postcard.

Ksar of Ait-Ben-Haddou

Theย ksar, a group of earthen buildings surrounded by high walls, is a traditional pre-Saharan habitat. The houses crowd together within the defensive walls, which are reinforced by corner towers. Ait-Ben-Haddou, in Ouarzazate province, is a striking example of the architecture of southern Morocco.

Since 1987 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Edgar for the postcard.

Portuguese City of Mazagan (El Jadida)

The Portuguese fortification of Mazagan, now part of the city of El Jadida, 90-km southwest of Casablanca, was built as a fortified colony on the Atlantic coast in the early 16th century. It was taken over by the Moroccans in 1769. The fortification with its bastions and ramparts is an early example of Renaissance military design. The surviving Portuguese buildings include the cistern and the Church of the Assumption, built in the Manueline style of late Gothic architecture. The Portuguese City of Mazagan – one of the early settlements of the Portuguese explorers in West Africa on the route to India – is an outstanding example of the interchange of influences between European and Moroccan cultures, well reflected in architecture, technology, and town planning.

Since 2004 it is a Unesco site.

Thanks to Mary Ann for the postcard.

marocco - el jadida